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  • Author: Derek M. Scissors
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Chinese foreign investment declined through mid-2014 for the first time since the financial crisis. By sector, energy draws the most investment, but a slump in energy spending means that metals and real estate have been more prominent so far in 2014. The United States has received the most Chinese investment since 2005, followed by Australia, Canada, and Brazil. China invests first in large, resource-rich nations but has also diversified by spending more than $200 billion elsewhere. Chinese investment benefits both China and the recipient nation, but host countries must consider thorny issues like Chinese cyberespionage and subsidies.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Terrorism, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Canada, Asia, Brazil, Australia
  • Author: Jon Kyl, Jim Talent
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: When President Obama took office, the armed services of the United States had already reached a fragile state. The Navy had shrunk to its smallest size since before World War I; the Air Force was smaller, and its aircraft older, than at any time since the inception of the service. The Army was stressed by years of war; according to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, it had been underfunded before the invasion of Iraq and was desperately in need of resources to replace its capital inventory.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Economics, Politics, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: John L. Kokulis
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: The rise in military health care spending has been a primary driver of the large growth in military personnel compensation over the past decade. Left unchecked, these costs will impact the ability of the DoD's Military Health System (MHS) to support its three critical missions: 1. Readiness for deployment: Maintaining an agile, fully deployable medical force and a health care delivery system so they are capable of providing state-of-the-art health services anytime, anywhere; 2. Readiness of the fighting force: Helping commanders create and sustain the most healthy and medically prepared fighting forces anywhere; and 3. The benefits mission: Providing long-term health coaching and health care for 9.7 million DoD beneficiaries.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Economics, Health, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Kevin A. Hassett
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: This paper reviews the empirical literature on countercyclical policy. It finds that three types of countercyclical policies have been studied in the literature: built in stabilizers, temporary policy changes, and more permanent policy changes. The literature is decidedly mixed on the effectiveness of temporary changes, but more hopeful concerning the other two.
  • Topic: Debt, Economics, Markets, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Martin S. Feldstein
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: This paper comments on the experience of the U.S. economy in the 1930s, its lessons for managing the current economic downturn, and the relation of U.S. economic conditions to our future national security. Some of the conclusions are: (1) Although the current recession will be long and very damaging, it is not likely to deteriorate into conditions similar to the Depression of the 1930s. Policy makers now understand better than they did in the 1930s what needs to be done and what needs to be avoided. (2) The focus on domestic economic policies in the 1930s and the desire to remain militarily neutral delayed the major military buildup that eventually achieved the economic recovery. (3) A well-functioning system of bank lending is necessary for economic expansion. We have yet to achieve that in the current situation. (4) Raising taxes, even future taxes, can depress economic activity. The administration's budget proposes to raise tax rates on higher income individuals, on dividends and capital gains, on corporate profits and on all consumers through the cap and trade system of implicit CO2 taxes. (5) Inappropriate trade policies and domestic policies that affect the exchange rate can hurt our allies, leading to conflicts that spill over from economics to impair national security cooperation. Reducing long-term U.S. fiscal deficits would reduce the risk of inflation and thereby reduce the fear among foreign investors that their dollar investments will lose their purchasing power. (6) The possibilities for domestic terrorism and of cyber attacks creates risks that did not exist in the 1930s or even in more recent decades. The scale and funding of the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security is not consistent with these new risks.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Terrorism, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Kevin A. Hassett, Gilbert E. Metcalf
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: This paper measures the direct and indirect incidence of a carbon tax using current income and two measures of lifetime income to rank households. Our results suggest that carbon taxes are more regressive when annual income is used as a measure of economic welfare than when proxies for lifetime income are used.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Anthony T. Lo Sasso
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: The present upswing in state-level efforts to "do something about health care," combined with presidential campaign-related rhetoric, suggests that health care is back with a vengeance on the public consciousness. Many states are proposing what appear to be new strategies to cover the uninsured when in reality the "new" strategies rely on old approaches that have not proven highly effective in the past, notably community rating and guaranteed issue regulations. Using data culled from a popular health insurance distributor and the published literature provides a compelling portrait of the predictable distortions that can result from regulations aimed at improving perceived deficiencies in the non-group and small group health insurance markets.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Health, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Kevin A. Hassett
  • Publication Date: 01-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Every year the Census Bureau reports data on income inequality and poverty, based on income estimates derived from the Current Population Survey. Our analysis suggests that the data may not be presenting an accurate picture. By under-reporting incomes, leaving out certain sources of income, and not making equivalence adjustments that are now standard among researchers, the reports present an imperfect picture of overall welfare. We develop an alternative that relies on data from the National Income and Product Accounts. Our data reveal that real median incomes have been increasing in the recent period, albeit at a slower rate than the long-term average. Using the same methodology for consumption, we find that consumption for all income groups, including the middle, has been growing robustly in recent times. This is in contrast to statistics reported by the Consumer Expenditure Survey, the most often cited data for all consumption analysis, which show middle class consumption declining.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Katrina Kosec, Scott Wallsten
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Government policies are routinely subjected to rigorous cost analyses. Yet one of today's most controversial and expensive policies—the ongoing war in Iraq—has not been. The $212 billion allocated by the U.S. Treasury has been widely reported. But the real, direct economic costs include more than budgetary allocations. Other costs include lives lost, injuries, and lost civilian productivity of National Guard and Reserve troops mobilized for the conflict. The conflict, however, also has gene rated cost savings, especially in terms of resources no longer being used to enforce UN sanctions and people no longer being killed by Saddam Hussein's regime.
  • Topic: Economics, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Palestine
  • Author: Veronique de Rugy
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Congress should direct home land security funding to program s that provide the greatest return in the most crucial security missions. Since the number of possible attacks is effectively unlimited and the resources we can devote to the fight against terror are limited, spending should not occur without a careful cost-benefit analysis. Most importantly, it is perfectly reasonable to decide not to implement an antiterrorism measure, not because it has no benefit, but because the costs are too high compared to the potential benefits. Of course, program s that are not cost effective should never be implemented.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Veronique de Rugy
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: International terrorism is probably the greatest security challenge America faces today. Policymakers have responded in two ways--going after terrorists abroad and improving security against terrorism at home by boosting homeland security funding. Regarding the latter, total spending directed to homeland security activities will be at least $50 billion for FY2006.Yet, the important question is whether America is getting the maximum level of benefit in exchange for this increase in spending. This paper performs a detailed review of homeland security's spending practices. First, it takes a look at the economics of homeland security spending and contrasts that with the politics of decision-making in this area. Second, it examines the state of homeland security spending. Finally, the paper analyzes how homeland security funds are being allocated and asks whether this is conducive to achieving improved security in the United States. This updated version also includes a review of federal spending to bolster port security.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Karlyn H. Bowman
  • Publication Date: 02-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: What do Americans think about the health of the Social Security system and proposals to reform it? This AEI Public Opinion Study looks at how different pollsters have approached the issue. It provides historical data and includes trends on aspects of the debate from major pollsters.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Karlyn H. Bowman
  • Publication Date: 08-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: In 1976, for the first time as far as we can tell, a pollster asked people about various qualities that were important for a president to have and included “compassion” as an option people could choose. Seventy-four percent chose “placing the country's interests above their own,” 73 percent “intelligence,” 68 percent “sound judgment in a crisis” and, separately, “competence or ability to get the job done,” and 67 percent “compassion, concern for little man/average citizen.” [All questions discussed in this introduction appear below.] At about that time, Gallup asked several questions that compared Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford on this quality. Since that time, in every election, pollsters have compared candidates (and rated presidents) on being compassionate. The National Election Pool exit pollsters compared the Democratic candidates on it in the 2004 primaries. In January 2004, Princeton Survey Research Associates/Newsweek interviewers asked whether George W. Bush and, separately, John Kerry cared about people like you. In February, Harris, CNN, and Time asked whether each man cared about the average American. Also in February, Gallup, CNN, and USA Today interviewers asked which candidate was more in touch with the problems of ordinary Americans.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: J. Gregory Sidak
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Legal criticism of broadcast regulation typically starts by demonstrating the paradoxically disparate treatment of print media and broadcast media under the First Amendment. In contrast, economic criticism typically starts by demonstrating that the scarcity of the electromagnetic spectrum, to the questionable extent that it exists, does not distinguish broadcasting from any other medium of communications for which the essential factors of production are privately owned and ordered. Each line of criticism is powerful. And each continues to the current day to appear again and again in court challenges to broadcast regulation. It is more useful, however, to model broadcast regulation in terms of the creation and dissipation of rent.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Karlyn H. Bowman, Todd J. Weiner
  • Publication Date: 11-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: More than a dozen corporate scandals have unfolded since December 2001. How have ordinary Americans reacted? One answer can be provided by the performance of the stock market. Another indicator is public opinion. As some of the key trials get underway, it's worth examining the polls to see how the scandals have affected perceptions of business. The results should provide some warning flags for Congress as that institution takes a closer look at the mutual fund industry.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Stephen Golub
  • Publication Date: 03-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: On January 13, 1998, Stephen Golub, professor of economics at Swarthmore College, led the sixteenth seminar in AEI's series Understanding Economic Inequality. Mr. Golub's presentation sought to dispel fallacious but widespread views concerning the effects of competition from low–wage countries in international trade, including the view that such competition has significantly increased wage inequality in the United States.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: United States